‘Twas the night before Christmas when all through the county
Not much was stirring, due to lack of a bounty.
Our stockings are hung by the chimney with care
Hoping soon our state will know fiscal repair.
No visions of sugar plums dance in our heads,
But more practical gifts we ask from Santa instead:
And by that, I mean an inviting business environment that encourages businesses to locate and grow here. Thriving businesses pay taxes that fill the state’s coffers. Thriving businesses hire people, resulting in less demand for expensive unfunded government social programs. Let’s make the whole state an enterprise zone and offer tax credits to businesses hiring the unemployed. Let’s streamline the permit process for getting a manufacturing plant up and running. How about a short-term moratorium on any new law that would add even one cent more to the cost of doing business here?
We can’t be the leader on environmental reform unless the science underlying the legislative action is beyond reproach. California can’t mandate a reduction in greenhouse gases through land use, yet also raid local redevelopment and transit funds that provide the means to getting people out of their cars and living in higher density/mixed use developments. Stop the contradictions. Stop regulation that invites litigation and loopholes. Start giving incentives for good behavior instead.
What we could use is a 54 member Congressional delegation that work together to assure that California secures needed federal funding for major infrastructure projects like high speed rail, and much needed intervention to balance the laudable goal of environmental protection with a real focus on economic stability and global competitiveness.
I fervently wish our elected officials would make the decisions that are best for the state instead of what is best for re-election. California is not a lost cause. We are not ungovernable or beyond regaining our position as the Land of Golden Dreams. We’ve just lost our way.
Like every good little girl and boy, we want some things that will help make our lives a little sweeter and easier: a water bond and infrastructure that provides a reliable supply; fully funded educational and workforce development programs that prepare and motivate students for high-skill, high-wage careers; a diverse housing market to meet the full range of workforce housing; a comprehensive and efficient multi-modal transportation system to move goods, people and services; a prosperous, growing economy and a high quality of life for Orange County residents. And a pony.
The New Year dawns with the chance to do right,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!”